Bean Brewding Self-guided Coffee Tours

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Bean Brewding have just released a self-guided Brisbane CBD coffee tour.  You can use their handy guide which includes a map and all the contact details of eight of the leading coffee spots. You’ll be able to explore some of Brisbane’s best independent coffee styles, roasters and café environments. You can use the guide in your own time with your friends or family, or during your breaks at work with your colleagues.

This exclusive guide will allow you to have one free coffee and give your 10% off your next Bean Brewding coffee tour.

Download your copy of Bean Brewding’s self-guided Brisbane CBD coffee tour here.

Nickel Kitchen and Bar opens

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When you walk into the Nickel Kitchen and Bar you’ll be drawn to the amazing chandelier which is made from wine glasses. A nod to the owners’ famous Craggy Range winery in New Zealand.

The décor is opulent industrial meets art deco monochrome. The black and white photography on the walls are taken from their family owned and operated winery. There is a huge bookcase with wine bottles and off to the side is a massive bar.

The menu is inspired by New York and the owner TJ Peabody is aiming to bring the concept of the brunch trend to Brisbane. In America brunch isn’t just a meal between breakfast and lunch but an all-day affair.

The ingredients are sourced from among the best of Australian produce, including chickens are from the Barossa Valley and line caught fish of the day. The menu is designed to be egalitarian with a snack menu available all day.  There are classic dishes with a little bit of a modern twist. The classic Caesar salad is made at the table.

Nickel aims to bring back memories of dining out from your childhood, when you dressed up and went out with your parents for special occasions.

Nickel Kitchen and Bar is located at 757 Ann Street in the Fortitude Valley.

 

Restaurant review: Primal Pantry

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To celebrate Matt being on holidays we thought we enjoy a nice lunch out. If you are following a paleo diet your options are somewhat limited in Brisbane, but we decided to try the Primal Pantry. The Primal Pantry serves only organic produce, 100 percent grass fed meat, no refined sugar, no grains, no processed oils and limited dairy. It is the ideal place to go if you have allergies or food intolerances.

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For entre we shared succulent Crispy Chicken Wings with prosciutto wrapped scallops and creamy cauliflower puree.

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For a main I tried the Confit Duck on seeded bread, with superfood watercress and caramelized orange.

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Matt had the Mexican Beef Cheeks with crisp tortilla and cucumber salsa. I tasted some and we both thought this was the highlight of the meal.

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We also ordered sweet potato fries with aioli sauce and roast vegetables as a side.

We agreed it was a nice place to have lunch and that we’d be back sometime soon, perhaps to try their tempting breakfast menu next time.

Primal Pantry
Corner Florence and Macquarie Streets
Teneriffe, Brisbane QLD 4005
 Primal Pantry on Urbanspoon

Restaurant Review: The Paleo Café Brisbane

paleo-cafe

The Paleo Café is located on the corner of Market and Mary St, and has both indoor and outdoor seating. I have also been to the Paddington café where there is only indoor seating and no bookings allowed. They are both popular places so you’ll need to arrive early to get a seat.

The paleo diet encourages followers to eat like cavemen – consuming lots of meats, eggs, nuts, seeds and berries, while eliminating sugar, grains, legumes and dairy. So one great thing about this chain of cafes is that it is the perfect place to eat for people with celiac disease or food intolerances.

The first time we visited for breakfast, where I had eggs and avocado on toast. I was keen to try the grain free bread, which turned out to be the perfect addition. I also tried the bulletproof coffee, but it wasn’t for me. I like their regular cappuccino which you can have on coconut or almond milk.

For my birthday we went again to the Paleo Café and just about all of us ordered the lamb burger, which is a tender lamb patty on linseed focaccia with mint aioli, rocket, tomato, onion, avocado and gherkin topped with beetroot relish and served with sweet potato chips and more aioli. We all thoroughly enjoyed our meals and the chips were the highlight.

For work lunches I have regularly been having the Mediterranean Vegetable Salad, which is a generous mix of roasted eggplant, olives, onion and greens, topped with a moreish salad dressing. You have the option of adding some protein, with chicken, prawns, salmon or kangaroo, but I like to have it plain. Sometimes I treat myself to dessert, but these are really rich, so it’s best to share with a friend.

Highly recommended for a lunch date with friends or family.

Paleo Café
The Paleo Café chain has five cafes in Cairns, Paddington in Brisbane, Brisbane CBD, Bondi Junction in Sydney and the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria.

Paleo Cafe on Urbanspoon

Review of Queen Street Markets

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For the last couple of weeks I have been sampling a different lunch at the Jan Powers Queen Street markets in the Brisbane City.

  • Bagel Boys – are excellent. They are always popular so you have to line up, but the time goes pretty quickly.
  • At the Skinny Scoop I had an icy cold acai classic bowl, topped with muesli and fresh fruit. It was yummy but perhaps more suited to the warmer months.
  • The Pocket from Burleigh make delicious falafel with fresh salad in a pita bread. Recommended.
  • Goetzinger Small goods make good German Sausages, but it is filling. They serve Swiss and German style sausages in a hot dog style bun.

Other produce you can buy at the city markets are as follows:

  • Goat Pie Guy – I have previously had Goat Pies from the Goat Pie Guy and I highly recommend them to take home and pop in the oven for a quick and delicious meal. Unfortunately they don’t sell them hot at the city markets.
  • Good Mix is a combination of superfoods to have instead of your regular muesli – Chia seeds, almonds, pepitas, coconut, buckwheat, flaxseed, sesame seeds, goji berries, raw cacao nibs, puffed amaranth, puffed millet.
  • Iced Tea – I’ve tried the mojito and raspberry iced tea, and both were refreshing.
  • I Heart Brownies – I tried the Jaffa flavoured brownie from I Heart Brownies. It was rich chocolaty and orange flavoured cake in the shape of a heart.
  • The Popcorn Man – is very morish, but one big bag is better shared with a group of people.
  • Delicious flavoured peanuts from the Peanut Van make a great snack.

The Queen Street markets may be crowded at lunch time, but are worth while to try some of Brisbane’s best produce.

Harvest exhibition at GOMA

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Yesterday I went to the opening of ‘Harvest’, an exhibition and film program exploring food as a subject for contemporary art. It being held at Brisbane’s Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) from 28 June to 21 September 2014.

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With over 150 works from the Gallery’s Collection, ‘Harvest’ includes magnificent still lifes from the seventeenth century to today, contemporary photography, bold video works, and dramatic large-scale installations, with major new acquisitions of works by Argentine artist Tomás Saraceno.

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My favourite pieces were art work by Wei Wei (two above), and this still life.

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Afterwards I enjoyed a delicious cheese platter at GOMA Cafe Bistro.

The best bit about this exhibition is that it’s free.

Harvest at the Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA)
Follow @qagoma with #Harvest

Carseldine Markets

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Carseldine Markets are located on the old QUT Carseldine Campus in Brisbane and are open Every Saturday from 6am to 12 noon.

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I had a pleasant visit and enjoyed a filling breakfast of pulled pork and then a delicious super healthy green smoothie. There is a gourmet food and dining are where you can pick up breakfast or brunch.

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The Carseldine Farmers and Artisan Markets is North Brisbane’s very own genuine produce, foodie and craft market with over 150 stalls. It features a wide range of wares focusing on premium and in-season fresh produce from South East Queensland.

You can find traditional and gourmet foods, market provisions made by passionate producers, growers, farmers, painters, cooks, chefs, designers, bakers, fishmongers, butchers, baristas, and juicers.

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There is also live music, activities for the kids, and a huge seating area.

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Recommended for those who live locally.

Carseldine Markets
532 Beams Rd (Cnr Beams & Dorville Rd)
Carseldine, Brisbane

Restaurant Review of Fat Noodle

For our anniversary we decided to have lunch at Fat Noodle. It is located at the Treasury Casino, so we were not allowed to take our camera in, which is why there are no photos. Although having said that, our neighbours were taking photos with their phone cameras, so I don’t know how strict they are on their no camera policy in the restaurant.

The menu consists mainly of Vietnamese dishes, with a sprinkling of Chinese, Thai and Malay. The restaurant is owned by Luke Nguyen, so we expected the dishes to be authentic and fresh.

We were greeted with Jasmine tea, but I decided to try the fresh ginger lemonade while Matt had a glass of wine. Entrées were bought out pronto, and I devoured huge fluffy BBQ pork buns, while Matt sampled the delicious prawn and pork rice paper rolls.

For a main, I couldn’t go past the signature dish, Fat Pho Noodles, which is a 20-hour beef broth, with thinly sliced Angus sirloin and brisket, bean sprouts, fresh Thai basil, fresh chilli and rice noodles. It was a huge dish with plenty of noodles and a great meaty flavoured broth. I regretted eating the pork buns and I struggled to finish my dish. Matt choose to have the Singapore Laksa, which he thoroughly enjoyed.

Overall Fat Noodle served generous sized dishes with authentic Asian flavours.

Fat Noodle on Urbanspoon

Fat Noodle
Treasury Casino
130 William St
Brisbane CBD
Ph 07 3306 8888
Open 7 days, Lunch, Dinner and Late

Review: Meatcart

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Meatcart is an online butcher (www.meatcart.com.au) with their production facility located in Eagle Farm, Brisbane.  The meat is grass-fed all the way through and this provides more a leaner cut and less marbling. Meatcart offers high quality beef, pork, chicken, lamb and seafood which you can order from the convenience of your home.

We decided to try Meatcart and see if there was any difference. We ordered 500g each of pork loin chops, lamb loin chops and organic beef rump steak. The meat was precut into handy portion sizes. For example the 500g of beef steak has 2 to 3 slices of steak, whereas the 1kg option has 4 to 6 slices. Meatcart even have a range for those who are looking after their weight, called CorrectWeight, where the meat is pre-portioned and trimmed of fat.

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The meat arrived on Wednesday just after 3pm in the afternoon and was icy cool when I opened the bag to put the meat in the fridge. It was packed in an insulated cooler bag, with two large plastic packets of ice cubes. The bag has been fully tested to keep your meat chilled for a minimum of 8 hours.

meatcart-pork

The first night we had the pork chops with vegetables. The pork comes from the Darling Downs and it’s nice to know it is 100% Sow Stall Free.

The second night we ate our delicious organic rump steaks with potato chips. They were Certified Organic, which means the animals have been raise with no exposure to artificial elements such as hormones, growth promoters, pesticides, residues, or chemical fertilisers.

On the third night we tried the lamb chops with steamed vegetables. The lamb chops are from New South Wales and Victoria and are 100% grass fed. All three cuts of meat were delicious, but the lamb was my favourite.

Meatcart delivers to all areas of Brisbane 2 business days after your order is placed. There is a flat rate delivery fee of $7.15 including GST per delivery.

Thank you to Meatcart for providing us with a sample pack to trial their meat. 

Restaurant Review: L’angolo Bistro

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L’angolo Bistro means ‘the angle’ in Italian, as the restaurant is right on the corner of the building in Hamilton Harbour. I was invited to attend a tasting event last night. L’angolo Bistro menu consists of authentic traditional dishes, as well as more modern interpretations. They also try to use fresh and organic ingredients where possible, this includes pizza dough from organic flour and a selection of organic and biodynamic wines. The menu includes many gluten free, vegan and dairy free options. 

I settled into the comfy bench seats and here’s what we tasted:

langolo-anchovies

Anchovies marinated in a Chardonnay Vinegar, with breadcrumb and Fior di Latte – fresh and not at all fishy as I was expecting!

langolo-calamari

Deep Fried Baby Calamari served with Basil Pesto Mayo and Lime – tender sticks of calamari that were cooked just right.

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Delicious tomatoey meatballs made using grandma’s recipe.

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An authentic thin pizza base – pizza with mozzarella, Italian pistachios, grated zucchini, diced tomatoes, parma prosciutto and shaved grana.

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Risotto with prawns and asparagus in a lobster bisque – was impressively presented and cooked to al dente.

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Homemade mushroom and spinach lasagna with black truffle bechamel.

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My personal favourite of the night was tagliatelle with marinated quails, pancetta and Sardinian Mirto. The homemade saffron egg pasta was divine.

langolo-pork

By this stage I was getting close to full, and the pork belly came in a close second favourite. The crispy skin was perfect (hint: turn it upside to cut it) and it was served with truffle mashed potato and mushroom sauce.

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The Italian Dark Chocolate and Almond Tarte reminded me an American brownie.

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The Traditional Italian donuts were filled with a delightful Chantilly Cream and served with hot chocolate.

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And lastly there was just enough room to pop in an decadent Italian Chocolate Truffle filled with pistachios and walnuts.

Overall I was impressed by the quality and variety of dishes we were served.

L’angolo Bistro is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, while also offering a small aperitvo menu in keeping with the Italian lifestyle.

L’angolo Bistro
T04, Hamilton Harbour,
Kingsford Smith Drive, Hamilton

L'Angolo Bistro on Urbanspoon

Thank you L’angolo Bistro for inviting me to be a guest at your restaurant.